Are you out pounding the pavement in search of a new job?  If you are, you’re not alone.  The unemployment rate in the United States is at 7.7% as of November 2012 with approximately 12.2 million people unemployed according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  If you’re looking for a new job, here are some tips for your job search:

Throw the Old Resume in the Trash

If you want to land a job, you have to stand out and get creative.  Don’t let the process of looking for a job leave you as someone “just going through the motions”.  Being creative in how you look for a job doesn’t apply only to those trying to get into creative careers, either.

The majority of job seekers have a traditional one page resume with their contact information on the top, their objective statement followed by their list of qualifications and experience.  To stand out – you need to do something different.  Think about how you could show a prospective employer your abilities in a format outside the traditional resume: maybe you could create a video resume, or an interactive resume online.

Prioritize Your Search

For anyone who has been job searching for a while, you might get to the point where you’re just applying to every job opening you see.  You’ll have better results if you target your efforts to industries and positions that you’re really interested in and have the skillset to do the job well.  Look for companies you want to work for, and pursue them even if they don’t have any current jobs listed.  You never know if you are contacting someone at just the right moment, where your skills exactly match a position they were just getting ready to try and fill.

Don't Forget About Social Media

Don't be surprised if your prospective employers are checking you out online - and all of your various social media accounts may come under the microscope.  Before you post something online, think about it.  Would it help a hiring manager learn more about you in a good way - or in a way that may prevent you from getting the job?

Find Ways to Expand Your Skills and Experience

You really need to be proactive to get hired in today’s job market.  The job skills you had before may not be relevant to what employers need today, so be on the look-out for opportunities that will let you gain new skills.  Consider taking an online course, volunteering for charities or taking on freelance assignments.